Wednesday 3 July 2019

Hippie Death Cult - 111 (Album Review)

Release date: July 26th 2019 (Digital)/August 23rd 2019 (Vinyl). Label: Cursed Tongue Records (Vinyl). Format: CD/DD/Vinyl

111 – Tracklisting

1. Sanctimonious
2. Breeder’s Curse
3. Unborn
4. Mrtyu
5. Pigs
6. Treehugger
7. Black Snake


Eddie Brnabic : Guitar
Laura Phillips : Bass
Ryan Moore : Drums
Ben Jackson : Vocals/Keys


111 is the new album from Hippie Death Cult and it’s quite a highly psychedelic mix of Doom Metal, Stoner Rock, Grunge and classic Hard Rock sounds. The album is quite brooding and heavy from the start with Hippie Death Cult creating a complex sounding atmosphere that is influenced by Black Sabbath and Soundgarden in places especially on the excellent opening song – Sanctimonious.

Sanctimonious sees Hippie Death Cult playing a hybrid Doom Meta/Grunge sound with the heavy atmosphere moving between Black Sabbath style heaviness and soaring Grunge melodies. Even the vocals have a slight Chris Cornell influence to them. The lyrics are very cool and allows Hippie Death Cult music to grow naturally. The listener becomes part of the action with the swirling psychedelic noises working best when the Grunge rhythms appear. This is a fantastic song to open the album with.

Second song – Breeder’s Curse – is straight up Doom/Stoner Rock song with plenty of anger and attitude to match. The riffs are loud, confident and angry from the start. You can hear a little bit of FUZZ ROCK starting to appear as Hippie Death Cult change their style of music for this song. The heavy guitars pitch the perfect balance between classic seventies Doom/Hard Rock and more modern Fuzz/Stoner Rock grooves.

Third song – Unborn – is a song lasting past the eight-minute mark and Hippie Death Cult open with a creepy and almost occult Blues Rock riff. The song takes time to fully get going as Hippie Death Cult add many different genres for a heavier and progressive sound. This is easily one of the best songs on the album as Hippie Death Cult have more fun with this song and the Doom Metal based riffs are quite direct in places. The gloomy lyrics and passionate vocals will leave you wanting more.

Fourth song – Mrtyu – is an instrumental Psychedelic Folk Rock song that is superbly played from start to finish. It’s quite soothing to listen to and is a stark contrast to the other songs held on the album. I will admit that I wanted some heavy sounds to appear on this song. Though, it’s a cool change of pace and I admire the band for including this song on the album.

Anyway, the band get back playing their usual Hard Rock/Doom Metal/Grunge based melodies on the superb song – Pigs. This song has a Classic Hard Rock feel with HDS adding a distinctive Led Zep/Aerosmith approach to their overall sound. The vocals feel inspired by Chris Cornell again and I loved how the soulful vocals soon give way for the darker and heavier progressive guitars riffs to work their magic.

The final two songs Treehugger and Black Snake are more psychedelic but Hippie Death Cult still carry on playing their addictive Doom/Grunge hybrid sound and sees 111 ending on an exciting finish.

Hippie Death Cult should be mightily proud of this release. As 111 is a richly rewarding and deeply engaging album that becomes better with each subsequent listen.

Words by Steve Howe

111 will be available to buy on Digital from July 26th 2019 and on Vinyl from August 23rd  via Cursed Tongue Records.